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advertising, future of tv, Monetization, ad load, ad fill rates
Think Mid-Rolls: New report
Thursday, September 15, 2016
As video advertising continues to soar, and our customers continue to see major success with Ooyala Pulse, we got to thinking: how are viewers engaging with different ad formats and what are the trends to be mindful of and leverage as the boom of video advertising ensues.
Garett Sloane of Ad Age recently covered the new Video Index Extra that outlined the findings.  We analyzed the total number of ads, broken down by each ad placement (pre-, mid- and post-rolls) across nearly 50 global premium publishers and broadcasters between February 2015 and April 2016. 
The results? Mid-roll ads are on the rise in a big way.
Mid-roll ads are nothing new. They’ve been the bread-and-butter for traditional TV for decades, and we're all accustomed to an ad break in the middle of content - especially with episodic shows and other, longer-form content. But what’s unique is the historically-dominant pre-roll ad for online video is losing share to the mid-roll. 
Mid-roll ads increased a total of 24%, growing from 19% of all ads in February 2015 to 33% by April 2016. Pre-roll ads, though still the most dominant format, dropped from their perch of 75% of all ads in March 2015 to 60% in April 2016. Post-rolls represent a minor portion of total ads for premium content providers, yet they did see a modest bump in growth from 3.5% to roughly 7% of all ads.
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Even more impressive, year-over-year growth of impressions for mid-roll ads grew a staggering 110% in the same timeframe. Viewers watch mid-roll ads, on average, 90% of the way through. Pre-roll impression growth clocked in at 14% with a 78% average completion rate. Even post-roll impressions grew 74%, so while all video ad formats are on the up-and-up -- a testament to the overall shift in the ad biz to digital video -- mid-rolls are growing in a big way. 
We put the data to the test. Here’s an excerpt from the report about how our Strategic Media Consulting team applied our analytics to help boost a customer’s ad business by completely replacing a pre-roll ad strategy with mid-rolls: 
Ooyala’s Strategic Media Consulting team recently worked with a broadcast customer in the Nordic markets to test and analyze their audience drop-off rates based on ad placement and content length. Digging into the data, we found a significant amount of drop-off occurring before videos even started, due to a heavy pre-roll ad load strategy. As a result, the customer made significant changes to its ad load, removing pre-rolls altogether and, instead, focused purely on mid-rolls. They even increased the length of mid-roll breaks for certain pieces of content and categories. As a result, they achieved both higher ad load and higher engagement.
This and more is now all available in Ooyala’s new Video Index Extra: “The Rise of the Mid Roll”.
Paul Bernardini

Paul Bernardini is Director of Marketing Communications at Ooyala.

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